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Gerrard relishing the challenge as he faces top coaches

premier league aston villa v brighton & hove albion
Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard celebrates their first goal

Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard is relishing the different challenges of being a Premier League manager and admitted he is where he always wanted to be.

The 41-year-old was able to mastermind a second consecutive victory since he left Rangers for the West Midlands club with goals by Matt Targett and John McGinn enough to earn a 2-1 win at Crystal Palace on Saturday.

While the former Liverpool captain was delighted to make it six points out of six, his focus now turns to Wednesday when Villa host champions Manchester City.

After getting the better of Palace manager Patrick Vieira, Gerrard is excited to test himself against Pep Guardiola.

Gerrard said: “The challenges are coming thick and fast.

“I am not sure it is a league or level where you get much enjoyment because the next top coach comes along.

“This is a level where you need to remain focused from my point of view and to keep demanding standards from players, so we won’t get carried away because we know it can change very quickly.

“Secretly behind the scenes this is where I have always wanted to be and I have worked hard to get to this position so I will give it my best shot.”

Gerrard enjoyed plenty of success during a three-and-a-half-year spell with Rangers where he guided the Glasgow club to a historic 55th league title, bringing an end to Celtic’s dominance of almost a decade.

Man City have established themselves as one of the most feared teams in the world during the same 10-year period and will be expected to win at Villa Park in midweek.

But Gerrard insisted: “I think you have to respect the challenge and opposition. I am sure everyone will make us underdogs which is fine but we need to give the players belief and confidence to execute the game plan we put together.

“We will prepare for what is in front of us and it might look slightly different to what we have done in the games with Brighton and Palace but we can’t be in a better place with six points out of six.”

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